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322                             THE GAY  GENIUS

Chang Chun thought it was fun to send them to districts whose names
bore component parts contained in the respective personal names of the
Su brothers. Tseyu, too, had brought along his wife and his third son
and daughter-in-law, who had been living with him in the preceding
years at Kao-an.

At Tenchow, a short distance from Wuchow, Su Tungpo caught up
with his brother. They met now under sad circumstances. It was a
poor district and the two brothers went into a small eating-place for
lunch. Tseyu had been used to good food, and could not touch the very
bad wheat cakes sold at the shop. Tungpo finished his cake in a few
bites and said laughingly to his brother: "Are you going to take time
to chew this delicacy slowly?" They rose and left the shop and went
along slowly together with their families on the way to their destina-
tions, taking as much time as they dared, because Su Tungpo knew that
as soon as they arrived at Luichow, he would have to depart at once
to go beyond the sea.

The magistrate of Luichow was a great admirer of the Su brothers.
He gave them a grand reception and sent food and wine to them—and
was consequently impeached the following year and removed from his
office. The house where Tseyu stopped at Luichow eventually became
the temple, or memorial, to the Su brothers, after their death.

Tungpo had to leave, and Tseyu accompanied him to the coast. On
the evening of departure the two brothers and their sons spent the
night in the boat. Su Tungpo was again suffering from piles and was
in pain, and Tseyu tried to persuade him to give up liquor. Part of
the time they spent versifying, and Su tried out the skill of Tseyu's
young son in verse-making. It was a sad parting, a farewell for life,
and they sat up all night. Before his departure Su had written to Wang
Ku as follows: "I am now proceeding to my place of exile in a bar-
barian country in my old age. There is no hope of my returning alive.
I have said good-bye to my eldest son, Mai, and have given him instruc-
tions about my burial. As soon as I arrive at Hainan, the first thing
to do will be to make a coffin, and the second to make a grave. I left
a note to my children that when I die I am to be buried where I shall
be, beyond the China Sea. It will become the family tradition of
Tungpo that in life he does not bring his family along in his travels,
and in death he does not require his children to transport the coffin

That day he had prayed to a human god. There was a temple to two
old Chinese generals who had conquered the south of China. Travellers
who wanted to cross the treacherous sea at this point always consulted
the oracle at this temple on the propitious day for sailing. It was found
that the oracle had always been a good weather prophet, and Su
Tungpo followed the usual custom.